I used to have to manage one itinerary: mine. My brain had room for all sorts of extra stuff. Somehow I had my favorite pilates instructor’s entire schedule memorized, I knew all of my friends’ addresses and kids’ birthdays, didn’t miss a doctor’s appointment or, God forbid, a mani pedi.
Cut to the day I got pregnant and all hell broke loose. Some tiny little being held up my memory bank at gunpoint and drained it. Ok, so baby brain is a thing. I’d heard about it, I’d witnessed it, but somehow I thought I’d be immune. I’m nothing if not organized and methodical. Who am I without my photographic memory for license plates and instant recall for schedules, names, and, you know, which foods are perishable?
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve chucked a dirty diaper into the laundry basket. Similarly, I’m sure that beautiful dress my daughter wore to her Christmas concert ended up in the Diaper Genie (though I’m fine with never knowing for sure). I will turn the house upside down looking for my phone while I’m talking on it. I leave my keys in the door at least once a day (hey burglars, what’s up?!) and, more often than not, my lettuce ends up in the freezer, my milk in the cupboard and my ice cream in the trunk of the car in July.
You know how the receptionist at the hair salon asks if you want a reminder call or email before your appointment? Yes, both please. And can you send me a text? Oh, and actually can you have someone come by my house and pick me up? Because even if I do remember that I have an appointment, the chances also of remembering where I put my cars keys are basically zero.
Is it lack of sleep? Is it suddenly having another human being, or two, or three, move in and take up all of the room in your overloaded brain with their own needs and schedules? Is there a physiological explanation? Hormones? Maybe there’s a reason for it – like how we forget that we vowed to never go through labor again after that gong show that happened between our legs in the maternity ward. The human race would have ceased to exist long ago if we didn’t somehow forget about the trauma and get excited to do it all over again.
Whatever the cause, does it ever go away? My kids are 2 and 4 and I still have a hard time with appointments, not to mention finishing a sentence or a thought… Thankfully my son learned long ago to jump in when I lose my way. Seriously, I’ll be like “You guys, it’s time to put… (voice trails off)…” and he’ll pick up with a “our shoes on.” OMG this kid is smarter than I am. Or maybe his brain’s hard drive is well just below capacity because all he has to remember is which Octonaut is his favorite this week, how many times his sister knocked over his Lego tower and whether or not he’s still into muffins. Oh God, I love muffins. Wait, what was I talking about?